tv Maria Bartiromos Wall Street FOX Business October 11, 2019 10:30pm-11:00pm EDT
to read more check out this edition of barron's.com. that's it for now. see you next week on "barron's roundtable." an epic collection. >> there was probably 250,000. >> it's breathtaking. you're just overtaken by the number of arrowheads. >> do you think it's worth $1 million? >> or does that miss the point? >> he said, "i think you'll do the right thing, and share it with the people." >> can the heir fulfill that final request... >> i didn't have the money. >> oh, that's an issue. >> but i had a plan. >> ...with one wacky angle? [ door creaks ] [ wind howls ] [ thunder rumbles ] [ bird caws ] ♪
>> i'm jamie colby, driving today through the blue ridge mountains of western north carolina. cherokee and catawba indians lived here as far back as the last ice age. i've come, because a viewer wrote to me about a strange inheritance related to those, and other native american tribes. >> my name is jerry williams. my friend moon left me hundreds of thousands of indian arrowheads. he made me swear to keep them together. i've been trying to do just that. >> hi, jerry. i'm jamie colby. >> glad to meet you. come on in. >> nice to be here. jerry tells me that the story of the 1/4-million arrowheads he inherited begins on a summer's day, back in the 1930s, with two lovers, moon mullins and his fiancee irene cress. >> the day before they got married, they were skipping
rocks across the river. but irene said, "what are these? they don't look like rocks." >> they realized the skipping stones aren't stone at all. >> he said, "oh, honey, that's indian arrowheads." >> irene is instantly fascinated with the ancient relics. >> she said, "i think i'll start collecting these," and it just caught on. >> the newlyweds have a new hobby, one they'll pursue passionately through their 40-plus years of marriage. they'll also collect life-long friends among the fellow arrowhead enthusiasts they meet, like our heir jerry, who's part-native american, and this man, wayne underwood. >> he said, "if we get in a little fuss, then we just go arrowhead hunting." and some days, they'd go and hunt all day long. they just loved life, and they
loved spending it together. >> at the time, arrowheads are common in these parts, scattered like shells on a beach. >> just about anyplace you go, native americans have been there, and you can usually find something if you'll be patient and hunt for it. >> oh, gosh, we went to south carolina, north carolina, virginia, tennessee. we went everywhere. it was so much fun to go out and be together all the time. >> sounds like you became family. >> they were just like grandparents, really. my dad's mother and father died when i was three. and it was just like it was meant to be. >> over the years, moon and irene find their biggest hauls on farms, fertile land where tribes may have raised crops themselves, and built villages, leaving behind a long, hidden stash of treasures. >> on a real good day, they
might find 2,000 pieces. >> he said, "it's just like the indian people is wanting me to find their relics." >> moon and irene add arrowheads from mississippi, georgia, and texas, 20 states in all, as their collection grows to 100,000 arrowheads, then 200,000, and more. the couple display their ancient finds in their home. >> he had it set up beautifully. he made all his frames, cut all the glass. irene put cotton and the material, and formed the designs on the arrowheads. it was amazing. >> the mullins' collection is breathtaking. you're just overtaken by the number of arrowheads. >> joe candio is a native american historian, and member of the pascua yaqui tribe. it certainly surpasses anything that i've ever seen, as far as a private collection. the majority of them do associate themselves with the pre-columbian time.
>> check out this one. it's made from volcanic glass, often used in battle, and it's more than 10,000 years old. this one's even older, dating back more than 12,000 years. it's groove center is crafted to make the arrowhead better able to withstand the shock of colliding with a hard object, like the bone of a large animal. >> sometimes associated with the large mastodons that were living on the north american continent. it's quite rare to find something like this. >> it's just the most amazing collection i'd ever seen. >> in fact, when wayne underwood first sees the mullins' collection, he immediately wants it for a roadside attraction called mystery hill that he runs in nearby blowing rock, north carolina. >> here's all these pieces that were just unique. the history behind each one of 'em, i mean, what did that one piece do?
was it a tool? was it used for a weapon? was it a ceremonial piece? >> he's not the first to try to get the mullins' to part with it, or the last. >> moon and irene had an opportunity to sell this exhibit to john wayne. >> excuse me? >> here's a "strange inheritance" quiz question for you. native americans attached bird feathers, often from turkeys or hawks, to arrows, for what purpose? camouflage the shooter, balance the arrow, or stake a claim to the kill? the answer after the break. imagine traveling hassle-free with your golf clubs.
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>> so, what purpose did bird feathers serve on native american arrows? it's, b, the feathers balanced the weight of the arrowhead, allowing the arrow itself to spin in flight, and produce an ideal trajectory. >> it's a hobby that randy moon mullins and his wife irene began as newlyweds. half-a-century later, they've collected 1/4-of-a-million indian arrowheads from all across america. >> they were looking at the largest privately-owned collection east of the mississippi. i mean, it's amazing. >> the couple display their finest relics in a makeshift museum in their hickory, north carolina home. >> boy scout groups, church
people come in, and see what he collected. it was an honor. >> inevitably, word of the collection spreads well beyond hickory. >> moon and irene had an opportunity to sell this exhibit to john wayne. >> excuse me? john wayne came to look at the exhibit? >> yeah. but moon asked him, "will you keep it all together?", he says, "no," and moon wouldn't sell it to him, because he knew it was going to be split up. >> according to underwood, the "duke" wasn't the last offer moon received. one was for half-a-million bucks. >> he turned down $500,000? >> yes. >> that sounds perfectly reasonable to american indian historian joe candio. >> the collection certainly is extremely valuable. you're seeing a lot of just pristine, perfect arrowpoints. >> on the low end, these intact arrowheads could run from 5- to 15-bucks apiece. >> as you go back in time,
typically an arrowhead becomes more valuable. some of the oldest points, my goodness, i have seen those go anywhere from $500-to-$2,000. >> 5 bucks here, 1,000 bucks there -- the value of the 250,000 arrowheads adds up quickly. do you think it's worth $1 million? >> oh, it's probably worth more than that. >> did moon ever sell any of them? >> no, he wouldn't sell 'em. to him, it was worth more than money, to see you or anyone else come there and look at it, and say, "how did you do this?" >> this much is certain -- it's not getting any easier. in 1978, moon is diagnosed with severe diabetes. the 72 year old has to have his left leg amputated. did that stop him from going out and looking --? >> oh, no. moon was the type of fella that'd get up in the morning with a smile on his face.
>> moon just throws on his prosthetic leg, and off he goes with irene, hunting more arrowheads. >> it come like an obsession. it was just like a great hobby, and he loved it. >> then in 1979, a new federal law makes it illegal to take arrowheads from public land. of course, by then, most of the prime areas are already combed over anyway, so it's unlikely anyone could duplicate moon and irene's achievement today. then, in 1982, moon's arrowhead collecting partner of more than 40 years, irene, passes away in her sleep at the age of 69. >> moon said, "my world just turned upside down." he loved her to death. >> moon closes his arrowhead display to the public. over the next few years, his own health declines. in 1985, he reaches out to his
dear friend jerry williams for help. >> he said, "would you come up and take care of me 'til i die? because i don't want to go to a resthome. 'cause if i do, i'll have to do something with the museum." he didn't want to lose it. >> was that moon's biggest fear? >> yes. >> jerry, who's in his 30s and recently married, convinces his wife they need to move in with moon to provide full-time care. why'd you agree to do it? >> i couldn't turn him down. he was just like a grandparent. i couldn't abandon him. the doctor even told me, "i don't think he's got that much longer to live." >> moon starts getting his affairs in order. >> he said, "you're going to be inheriting my collection. you're native american, and i think you'll do the right thing." >> what did he tell you would be right for you to do? >> he said, he knew that i would share it with the people. i said, "well, that's your wish," i said, "i'm going to hold to it." i said, "i love you to death for doing this." i mean, why did he want to give it to me?
i mean, [ laughs ], he could've given it to anybody, you know? >> but he picked you. >> he picked me. yes. >> moon updates his will, leaving jerry his rare and valuable stash of arrowheads, and his house and property. but under jerry's care, he hangs on longer than his doctors predicted. moon ultimately succumbs to heart disease in may 1987, two years after jerry moved in. >> he died right in my hands in '87. [ crying ] and...he just said, "thank you." i mean...i can't... just beautiful. just beautiful. >> you loved him so much. >> yes. >> his close friend is gone, and jerry wants to honor him by reopening moon's arrowhead museum. >> i went to the city, but the property wasn't fit to meet the codes. and he said that it would probably cost you $50,000.
>> did you have $50,000? >> no. no, we didn't have any money. >> so, the enormous arrowhead collection just sits in the dark for the next decade. >> i did nothing with it. it's killing me. because i wanted -- you know, i wanted to share it. >> did you feel like you were letting moon down? >> yes, i did. >> then things go from bad to worse. >> they finally called us and said, "we're going to have to take your property." >> what was the problem? >> the state was building a new highway right through the middle of the museum, and they had no place to move the museum to. >> so, wayne underwood has a brainstorm. >> i didn't have the money, but i had an opportunity to sell a ticket. >> this strange inheritance story is about to get downright weird. [ laughs ] >> here's another quiz question for you. three-of-the-following-four english words come from
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>> so, which of the following words does not come from a native american language? it's, d, the word "bison" comes from latin. the rest are all borrowed native american words. >> jerry williams inherits a vast and valuable collection of ancient indian arrowheads from his good friend randy moon mullins, and vows to keep it together. but there's a problem. the state of north carolina is planning on running a new highway through the house that contains the artifacts.
and people would not potentially see the collection ever again. >> no. >> how difficult was that for you to take? >> well, that was real difficult. >> he turns to wayne underwood, another long-time friend of moon, who's long-coveted the collection. >> when moon passed away, i said a prayer. "lord, i'm not going to get involved with the politics of the inheritance, so if it's meant to be that we have it, i'm just leaving it up to you." 10 years after that, jerry williams called me. >> without hesitation, wayne offers to buy moon's collection from jerry. >> i said, "jerry, would you sell the exhibit?", and he said, "yes," and told me what the price was. >> what was it? >> $300,000. >> a sweetheart deal for a collection some say is valued at more than $1 million, but jerry trusts wayne to keep the arrowheads together. there's just one tiny little problem.
>> i didn't have $300,000. >> oh, that's an issue. >> but what i had was, i had an opportunity to sell a ticket. >> a ticket to one of the most bizarre roadside attractions you'll ever see here in blowing rock, north carolina. it's called mystery hill, and wayne owns it. >> it's an unusual place that's on a vortex area. it's like there was a gravitational pull to it. >> the hill in infamous for these gravitational anomalies... [ laughs ] ...and strange phenomenon. ooh, my head. seriously. >> yeah, grab ahold of the rail there, just a minute, 'til you sort of get used to it. >> as i walk inside, my balance and senses are instantly thrown for a loop. okay, you look really funny. [ laughs ] in this house, the laws of gravity appear to not hold up. >> all your life, you've been taught water runs downhill. i'ma pour water in the low end
of the pipe. goes out the high end. >> this is a trick house. it's all crazy. objects seem to roll the wrong way, too. >> can you see it? >> why would it go up? everyone has their own suspicions as to why gravity misbehaves here. some claim there's a large mineral deposit below the house. in theory, the dense rock could create an unusually strong gravitational pull. it's just one of those things you've got to experience for yourself, and make up your own mind. okay! it's a funhouse. >> it is a funhouse. >> a funhouse that wayne thinks would be even more fun with an exhibit of native american relics, so he comes up with a clever counteroffer. >> i said, "jerry, here's the deal. if we move the collection to mystery hill, every time we sell a ticket, you and your wife will receive $1. when it reaches $300,000, the
exhibit will belong to the museum, but you and your wife will continue to get your $1." >> what did jerry say? what was his reaction? >> he said, "i like the idea." >> for awhile, anyway, but 300,000 tickets turns out to be awful lot to sell. is wayne's idea a big bust? >> i said, "what are we going to do?" ♪ >> we'd love to tell it. send me an email or go to our website... we trust usaa more than any other company out there. they give us excellent customer service, every time. our 18 year old was in an accident. usaa took care of her car rental, and getting her car towed. all i had to take care of was making sure that my daughter was ok. if i met another veteran, and they were with another insurance company, i would tell them, you need to join usaa because they have better rates, and better service. we're the gomez family... we're the rivera family... we're the kirby family, and we are usaa members for life.
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>> in the summer of 1997, wayne opens his new native american artifacts museum at mystery hill, and today, i get a personal tour. no way? it's one case after another. there's so much history in this room. >> years and years and years of history. >> and it all started with one arrowhead. >> this is the first board that they collected shortly after they got married. >> i just can't even imagine how many hours it would take to put a collection like this together. there's no denying it's one-of-a-kind, but would it really draw hundreds of thousands of paying customers? did you have expectations of even earning $300,000 in admission for them? >> eventually. >> the first few years, wayne sells around 20,000 tickets a year, and jerry and his wife get 20 grand in royalties, a nice, little income. that trend continues for
several more years, until the great recession hits. attendance at mystery hill tumbles. some months, the royalty checks are as little as a couple of hundred bucks. was jerry wrong to put his trust in wayne? >> i said, "what are we going to do?" >> but by 2012, things rebound along with the checks. in january 2016, the total surpasses that $300,000 threshold, and remember, the payments aren't done yet. the deal states the couple continue to get $1 a ticket forever. how much have they gotten above $300,000 do you think? >> it's going to be right at $400,000. >> so, jerry's smiling. >> oh, yeah. >> is moon smiling? >> yeah, moon's smiling and irene, too. yeah, because it's still together. all the hard work and all the time that they spent together, that exhibit is still being seen by people every single day.
>> what does it feel like to be in that room? >> it brings a lot of memories. when you're around somebody that long and collected with them, there's this burn in your heart. >> ancient peoples leave behind valuable pieces of history. thousands of years later, an accidental discovery kickstarts a life-long passion. and now, two proud custodians are making sure the relics are never hidden from view again. >> we're going to take care of it, and share it with as many people as we can share it with. >> it's just like it was god-sent. it was meant to be there. >> wayne now wants a new showcase for the indian relics, so right on site at mystery hill, he plans to build the moon and irene mullins collection. it will also feature workshops on traditional native american skills, including, of course, arrowhead making. i'm jamie colby. thanks so much for watching
"strange inheritance." and remember, you can't take it with you. ♪ fox business. [♪] lou: good evening. president trump is deploying 2,000 troops to saudi arabia to meet increasing threats in the middle east. the president authorizing sanctions against turkey but not yet activating those sanctions, depending on what the turks do in syria and whether or not the kurds are protected. president trump announcing a new phased approach to the u.s.-china trade negotiations in the obvious hope of deescalating rising tensions and rising rhetoric of both nations and